Appalachian Regional Commission Launches: “Envision Appalachia: Community Conversations for ARC’s New Strategic Plan”

Virtual discussion series will gather input to inform ARC’s strategic investment plan for fiscal years 2022-2026

Washington, D.C., March 9, 2021 – Today, Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) announced Envision Appalachia: Community Conversations for ARC’s Strategic Plan, a virtual series of public input sessions to identify critical opportunities and challenges facing Appalachia’s economic future. Using insights gathered from these public sessions, coupled with guidance from regional, state, and local partners, ARC will develop a strategic plan to inform investment priorities for fiscal years 2022-2026. Sessions will be held on the following dates:

  • Monday, April 12 at 3:00 PM ET
  • Wednesday, April 14 at 10:00 AM ET
  • Saturday, April 17 at 10:00 AM ET
  • Tuesday, April 20 at 7:00 PM ET
  • Thursday, April 22 at 12:00 PM ET

All sessions are free, but pre-registration is required. Evening and weekend options are available for those who cannot attend during business hours. Attendees will participate in 90-minute facilitated conversations, working with discussion leaders and a cross-section of community members to identify economic strengths and challenges, solutions and opportunities.

In addition to virtual sessions, ARC is also collecting input via a public survey available at

“ARC has long been known as a ground-up organization, working to support efforts to strengthen local economies and build community capacity,” said ARC Federal Co-Chairman Tim Thomas. “We realize this approach is even more imperative as we work together to address ongoing and future challenges presented by the current COVID crisis. I encourage Appalachians across all thirteen states to consider joining us to better inform these important discussions.”

ARC develops and issues a new strategic plan every five years in accordance with the Office of Management and Budget. ARC’s current strategic plan is an exception, as the onset of COVID-19 delayed public input plans in 2020. That plan was extended through September 30, 2021. More than 3,000 Appalachians provided input to help ARC form that strategy, which to date has invested more than $725.7 million, and attracted approximately $4 billion in leveraged private investment, to create economic opportunities, develop Appalachia’s workforce, expand critical infrastructure, leverage local assets and cultivate leadership and community capacity.

About the Appalachian Regional Commission
The Appalachian Regional Commission is an economic development agency of the federal government and 13 state governments focusing on 420 counties across the Appalachian Region. ARC’s mission is to innovate, partner, and invest to build community capacity and strengthen economic growth in Appalachia to help the Region achieve socioeconomic parity with the nation.